Clinic used WhatsApp to fish for clients

PETALING JAYA: The private clinic in Selangor, which offered fake MySejahtera vaccination certificates for RM500 each, had sent out messages randomly via WhatsApp.Police investigations found that messages advertising the clinic’s illegal service were sent to thousands of mobile numbers.

However, only those interested contacted the clinic.

Selangor police chief Comm Datuk Arjunaidi Mohamed confirmed that the messages were sent out randomly.

“They were fishing for potential clients and those interested responded.

“Our investigations revealed that many clients paid for the service via online transactions.

“We are also investigating if any clients came to the clinic to make payment,” he told The Star.

He said Selangor police would likely enlist the help of Bukit Aman investigators for the probe.

“Our checks revealed that of the 5,601 clients registered with the clinic, some were not from Selangor.“We will ask Bukit Aman to assist us in cross-checking the names to identify how many actually received the vaccine and how many only paid for the vaccine certificates,” he said.

Comm Arjunaidi warned the public against getting involved in such activities.

“We will take stern action against anyone involved in these activities which threaten public safety and health.

“While those offering the service can be liable to action for negligently committing an act that is likely to spread infection of any disease dangerous to life and giving false information, buyers could also face jail time and a fine.

“Buyers could be liable under Section 468 of the Penal Code for committing forgery with intent to cheat.

“Whoever commits forgery, intending that the forged document shall be used for the purpose of cheating, shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to seven years, and shall also be liable to a fine,” he said.

It was reported that the crackdown on private clinics that offered fake digital vaccination certificates included those in the Klang Valley.

This comes amid earlier raids by the authorities in Terengganu and Sabah.

In the latest raid on a private clinic in Gombak on Friday, police discovered that the fake certificates were being offered for RM500 each.

Before that, a man was arrested in Sabah for falsifying digital vaccination certificates.

Believed to be a member of a syndicate, the 31-year-old was arrested by Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission officers.

On Jan 8, Terengganu police arrested a doctor from a private clinic in Marang for allegedly issuing fake Covid-19 vaccination certificates.

Terengganu police chief Datuk Rohaimi Md Isa said the 51-year-old man was picked up following a public complaint.

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